Aluminum

Source: Used in many commercial and industrial products such as automobiles, airplanes, rockets, silverware, heat sinks, and soda cans. Its occurs naturally in high abundance in the earth’s crust in rocks and minerals such as corundum. Alum (aluminum sulfate) may be added to water to remove phosphorus and decrease turbidity.

Summary: Aluminum is element 13 on the periodic table. It has a density of 2.70 g/mL. The metal is the most abundant element found naturally in the crust of the earth and has many uses. It is found in rocks and minerals, commonly in aluminum oxides. Aluminum is highly reactive with oxygen and exposure forms an outer layer of corundum on the material, a harder substance than pure aluminum. Corundum is a mineral that may found in very well-known forms: ruby and sapphire. Its light weight, non-corrosive and high thermal conductivity properties are reasons why aluminum is chosen in materials for airplanes, automobiles, and many more applications. For many of these applications aluminum is used in alloys with copper or other metals to improve strength. The high thermal conductivity property is especially useful in heat sinks. Aluminum ores have been sought after and refined extensively in America and aluminum can be found in many commercial items including silverware and soda cans. The metal has very high reflectance properties that makes it useful in mirrors. Medical uses include additives in antacids and antiperspirants. Forming a compound with the sulfate anion produces alum which is an additive in water treatment processes to decrease turbidity and phosphorus concentrations.

GHS Hazard Statement: H228, H250, H261, H370, H372, GHS02, GHS08